BASEBALL FALLS IN SERIES FINALE AGAINST LOUISIANA TECH
SACRAMENTO, Calif. - The Sacramento State baseball team dropped a 10-5 decision to the Louisiana Tech Bulldogs on Monday, April 27 at Hornet Field.
With the loss, the Hornets fall to 23-19, 4-8 in Western Athletic Conference play, while the Bulldogs improve to 22-18, 7-9 inside the WAC. The two teams split the four-game series, winning two games apiece.
Both teams struck for a run in the first inning, with the Bulldogs taking a 1-0 lead in the top of the first on a sacrifice fly by Devon Dageford. Senior Hunter Martinez tied the score at 1-1 for the Hornets with a solo home run to lead off the bottom half of the inning, his fourth of the season.
The Bulldogs retook the lead in the top of the fifth, as back-to-back solo home runs by Dageford and Chris Kersten gave Louisiana Tech a 3-1 lead. Insurance came in the top of the sixth, as Alex Williams blasted a solo shot to right field to extend the advantage to 4-1.
Louisiana Tech broke the game open, as with two outs Kersten connected on his second solo home run of the game, extending the lead to 5-1. They extended the inning as Clint Ewing reached base on a wild pitch following a strike out, and Williams reached on an error. Five unearned runs would score in the inning, including a three-run homer by Patrick Thomas, giving the Bulldogs a 10-1 advantage.
After being held hitless following Martinez' home run for the next four innings, the Hornets showed signs of life offensively in the middle innings, finally breaking through to score in the bottom of the eighth. With one down, junior Josh Powers doubled to left, and was immediately brought home on a double by junior Tim Wheeler. The next two batters, seniors Blake Crosby and Jeff Roth, were both hit by pitches, loading the bases for freshman Aaron Crouch, who drove home Wheeler on a sacrifice fly to make the score 10-3. A walk reloaded the bases, but with two outs already in the inning, the Hornets were unable to capitalize any further.
The bottom of the ninth saw the Hornets once again rally, as with runners on second and third and no one out, Powers earned a RBI on a groundout to third, cutting the lead to 10-4. Wheeler followed with a RBI single, scoring redshirt freshman Ivan Otsuka to pull Sacramento State to within five at 10-5. With runners on first and second and one out, reliever Mike Jefferson was brought out of the bullpen for the third time in the series, and induced a game-ending double play.
Casey Jones (3-0) picked up the win in a spot start for Louisiana Tech, allowing three runs on seven hits in 7.1 innings of work. Freshman Alex Taku (0-1) picked up the loss for the Hornets, allowing three runs on six hits in 3.2 innings of work.
Wheeler and Crosby led the Hornets with two hits apiece, with Wheeler adding his 57th and 58th RBI of the season, which puts him in a tie for ninth place all-time on the Hornets single season charts. Kersten went 3-for-5 with two RBI and two runs scored to pace Louisiana Tech, while Dageford finished 2-for-3 with two RBI.
The Hornets will take on Stanford at Sunken Diamond at 5 p.m. on Wednesday before hosting San Jose State this weekend for a four-game Western Athletic Conference series.